As a pharmacist, you may understand the importance of keeping an accurate, up-to-date record of medications; however, it seems that few patients keep a medication list with them. Here are a few talking points that may help you convey the importance of this simple task:
- Medication lists help you track and manage all of your medications, including medication allergies. Keep the list updated and bring it to all medical appointments. An out-of-date list can be dangerous, especially if you have had to stop a medication due to an allergy or serious side effect.
- Medication lists help your pharmacist(s) and physician(s) monitor for duplicate therapy, medication interactions, etc. This is especially important if you use multiple pharmacies and/or see multiple prescribers.
- If you are hospitalized or are in an emergency situation and are unable to communicate, personal medication lists are the most complete and accurate source of your medications and how you have been taking them.
- Misunderstandings with and errors in interpreting verbally-communicated medical information are common.
- Creating and maintaining a medication list is easy to do and it may save your life!